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Old 12-09-2010, 03:25 PM   #51
Hellis
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Re: Tadashi Abe

Quote:
Clark Bateman wrote: View Post
Ditto, Jamie. Ellis Sensei did an excellent job with this book. This link will take you to the Aikido Journal bibliography link, where you will find some very positive reviews.
Hi Clark

Thank you for your valued approval of the book " Positive Aikido ", very much appreciated. If I recall , you were one of the first to order the book. ? You may be interested to know that we are now working on the next one.

Henry

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http://aikidoarticles.blogspot.com/
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Old 12-09-2010, 08:08 PM   #52
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Re: Tadashi Abe

Since there is a lot of interest in Tadashi Abe, perhaps this thread will interest:

http://www.aikiweb.com/forums/showth...hlight=tadashi
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Old 12-09-2010, 08:17 PM   #53
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Re: Tadashi Abe (anecdotes)

Our instructor Georges Rousseau (http://www.aikidotakemusu.com/article60.html) often mentions Tadashi Abe as one of the earliest and most important influences on his aikido.

For the purposes of this thread, I would like to just briefly summarize a couple of the anecdotes I heard Georges tell several times (leaving out much of the detail and a lot of Georges' story-telling flavor).

(1) "Protection"
In the first years of Abe's stay in Europe (mostly France and Belgium), his French was quite limited. One of the words he knew quite well was "protection": when Abe was demonstrating standard aikido exercises, Uke had to be well aware of openings for atemi, which Abe would definitely exploit, even during basic training (with relative beginners, at that time). As a case in point, Abe broke for instance a couple of Georges' brother's ribs once, during a course, and bruised many more.
(NB that in what I've heard about Abe's rough practice, nothing transpire of any kind of sick abuse that for instance Chiba seems to have displayed regularly.

(2) "Mauvais 6dan"
Once, in the dressing room after training, Georges asked about a scar on Tadashi Abe's belly. "Appendicitis?" "No, 6th dan". Abe then explained that O-Sensei Ueshiba asked him to go pick a fight in the bars of a rough neighborhood (harbor?). Abe apparently survived but got at least one knife-wound. Abe's comment: "Bad 6dan".

(3) The boxing coach
Abe used to regularly teach in a dojo organized by Pierre Chassang in the South of France (Marseille?). At the same venue, there was also a boxing gym. Abe apparently like to go and watch the boxers' training sessions. At somepoint, the boxing coach told Chassang to get rid of that Japanese guy and to keep him away from his boxers. "Didn't you see these eyes of his; he's a killer".

(4) Abe taking care of business in Tokyo
Georges was in Japan for some conference related to aikido-politics (1976 IAF congress, I think). Abe notices that Georges is not quite happy and asks what's wrong. Georges explains that he paid for his stay in advance, but that the travel agency apparently did not transfer the money to their Japanese branch. Abe makes a phone call to the local branch, using his best "samurai" tone of voice, puts Georges in a taxi, giving instructions to the driver in the same tone. When Georges arrives at the travel agency's Tokyo branch, someone is waiting for him with an envelope with the exact amount of money, bowing deeply.

(5) Streetfighting in Marseille
After training (in Marseille?), Abe and a bunch of Aikido students and their wifes went to eat at a Chinese restaurant, at the edge of a ‘hot' quarter of town. When the party left the restaurant, a gang of dangerous-looking people were coming towards them. Abe insisted for the rest of the party to get back into the restaurant (despite the fact that his students --not really wussies either- were eager to participate in any fight). Abe took care of it all. Several ambulances were needed to clean up the mess (lots of broken arms and legs). The local police seemed to be used to this kind of event.

FWIW.
There are plenty more of those, but this is what I can come up with right now, with a reasonable degree of accuracy in retelling what I've heard. I'll try to check the details of these anecdotes next Saturday and chime in again after having my memory refreshed.
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Old 12-09-2010, 09:23 PM   #54
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Re: Tadashi Abe

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Henry Ellis wrote: View Post
Hi Clark

Thank you for your valued approval of the book " Positive Aikido ", very much appreciated. If I recall , you were one of the first to order the book. ? You may be interested to know that we are now working on the next one.

Henry
Thank you, Sensei. And I'll be the first to order the second one, as well...
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Old 12-10-2010, 04:21 PM   #55
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Re: Tadashi Abe

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Clark Bateman wrote: View Post
Thank you, Sensei. And I'll be the first to order the second one, as well...
I promise you will be the first to know when it is completed. I am going to New Mexico next May ( ? ) to work with Dave Rogers the author for a couple of months to put all the material we have together...I need some NM sunshine on these old bones :-)

Henry

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Old 12-10-2010, 06:23 PM   #56
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Re: Tadashi Abe

Thank you mr Scheppers for the information!! Please ask Rousseau Sensei for more details on his expireinces with Abe Sensei.

Ellis Sensei please let all of us know when your book comes out as i would like to read that also.

All of this information is amazing. I am suprised about no one is researching more about Abe Sensei. Someone should compile this information from the remaining early practioners for an early european aikido historical book. Or perhaps reissue the early European aikido books. I find all of this facinating!!!
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Old 12-10-2010, 06:59 PM   #57
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Re: Tadashi Abe

Quote:
Jamie Yugawa wrote: View Post
All of this information is amazing. I am suprised about no one is researching more about Abe Sensei. Someone should compile this information from the remaining early practioners for an early european aikido historical book. Or perhaps reissue the early European aikido books. I find all of this facinating!!!
It's not the kind of aikido people wants today, and I think the "establishment" wants people like Abe Sensei to be forgotten.

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Old 12-10-2010, 06:59 PM   #58
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Re: Tadashi Abe

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Carl Thompson wrote: View Post
Make sure you get the tadashii (correct) Abe: Tadashi Abe
I would like to explain the purpose of my previous post above. For those of us who started our aikido in the UK, the history and lineages involved can be quite unclear (and the number of super-high-ranking teachers who keep very quiet on the subject doesn't help). The contributions of two important Japanese teachers can be further confused by them having similar names. The Japanese word for "correct" is tadashii. I used this as a way of distinguishing the Tadashi (only one "i" - totally different kanji) Abe from Kenshiro Abbe. Of course, I do not mean that one Abe is correct and the other isn't.

From the Japan side, I have a small anecdote concerning Tadashi Abe Shihan. I am afraid it was told by a very old student of Osensei and I struggled to understand his thickly Ibaraki-dialect Japanese, so I apologise for the lack of detail. He described how there was once a mean, violent deshi in the Iwama dojo called Abe. One night Osensei was outside, looking at the moon. Abe crept up behind Osensei and tried to attack him with a spear. Osensei disarmed and immobilised Abe without taking his eyes off the moon. When asked how he knew of the attack, Osensei said he could sense his attacker's ki.

Carl
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Old 12-10-2010, 07:03 PM   #59
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Re: Tadashi Abe

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Clark Bateman wrote: View Post
Ditto, Jamie. Ellis Sensei did an excellent job with this book. This link will take you to the Aikido Journal bibliography link, where you will find some very positive reviews.
I've already sent my requests to Father Christmas with a list of Aikido books but this is going on my birthday wish-list for next year.
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Old 12-10-2010, 07:21 PM   #60
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Re: Tadashi Abe

Sorry "Tadashi" Abe does use the kanji for "correct" 正 just minus the "i".
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Old 12-10-2010, 08:23 PM   #61
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Re: Tadashi Abe

In Japanese the name is written as 阿部 正: in hiragana, あべ ただし (minus an i, as Carl states).
(Actually, if I type in Abbe あっべ, my computer will not give me 阿部; it will struggle to find me something else.)

The name of Abbe Kenshiro is written as 阿部 謙四郎: in hiragana, あべ けんしろう.
You will notice that the family name Abbe is written with the same characters as for Abe Tadashi and so I am curious about the double b spelling. Mr Ellis, any idea?

Is your book still available, by the way? I would very much like to obtain a copy if it is.

Best wishes,

Peter Goldsbury

Last edited by Peter Goldsbury : 12-10-2010 at 08:25 PM.

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Old 12-11-2010, 03:30 AM   #62
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Re: Tadashi Abe

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Peter A Goldsbury wrote: View Post
In Japanese the name is written as 阿部 正: in hiragana, あべ ただし (minus an i, as Carl states).
(Actually, if I type in Abbe あっべ, my computer will not give me 阿部; it will struggle to find me something else.)

The name of Abbe Kenshiro is written as 阿部 謙四郎: in hiragana, あべ けんしろう.
You will notice that the family name Abbe is written with the same characters as for Abe Tadashi and so I am curious about the double b spelling. Mr Ellis, any idea?

Is your book still available, by the way? I would very much like to obtain a copy if it is.

Best wishes,

Peter Goldsbury
Hi Peter
Long time since we were in contact
As I understand it Kenshiro Abbe Sensei added an extra `` b `` when he arrived in the UK, I am not sure of the reason at this time. I have some papers somewhere on this point...

The book " Positive Aikido " is available on Amazon or from ` Trafford Publishing`.

Kind regards

Henry

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http://aikido-controversy.blogspot.com/
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Old 12-11-2010, 03:37 AM   #63
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Re: Tadashi Abe

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Demetrio Cereijo wrote: View Post
It's not the kind of aikido people wants today, and I think the "establishment" wants people like Abe Sensei to be forgotten.
I believe it ``is `` the kind of Aikido people want today. In the 1950s we found Abe Sensei amazing and powerful, that is why I started Aikido.
I accept that the ``establisment`` may well wish to forget Tadashi Abbe Sensei, that does not mean we should forget him, he is a legend and a great character of a modern Samurai.

Henry Ellis
http://aikido-controversy.blogspot.com/
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Old 12-11-2010, 03:56 AM   #64
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Re: Tadashi Abe

Quote:
Jamie Yugawa wrote: View Post
Thank you mr Scheppers for the information!! Please ask Rousseau Sensei for more details on his expireinces with Abe Sensei.

Ellis Sensei please let all of us know when your book comes out as i would like to read that also.

All of this information is amazing. I am suprised about no one is researching more about Abe Sensei. Someone should compile this information from the remaining early practioners for an early european aikido historical book. Or perhaps reissue the early European aikido books. I find all of this facinating!!!
Jamie

I was contacted a little while ago by Leo Tamaki a Japanese journalist living in France who is writing the history of Aikido in Eurpope , he has asked to interview me at some point in the future.
I was recommended to Mr Tamaki by Jiro Nakazono the son of Masahilo Nakazono Sensei, I am in regular contact with Jiro Nakazono who sent the following story to add to my sons blog.

I am 60; though I was too young to be a part of the "Pioneer Generation" of
European Aikido, I lived right next to the warriors who at each
demonstration they gave invited any challenger on the mat from the public.
When my father was invited to the Foreign Legion in Marseilles with Tadashi
Abe sensei, they were met with two big soldiers hiding behind both side of
the door with Baseball Bats... They were true Martial Artists, and their
students were aspiring to follow their footsteps. Some did, and some chose
a more civilized way, which is today's Aikido.
I met Henry Ellis sensei on the mat for the first time in 2007, i believe he
was over 70, and he gave me a Nikyo I felt for 4 months afterwards. It was
a completely different generation. Jiro Nakazono (45 years in Aikido).

Jiro Nakazono

Henry Ellis
http://aikido-controversy.blogspot.com/

Last edited by Hellis : 12-11-2010 at 04:06 AM.
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Old 12-11-2010, 09:13 AM   #65
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Re: Tadashi Abe

Quote:
Henry Ellis wrote: View Post
Hi Peter
Long time since we were in contact
As I understand it Kenshiro Abbe Sensei added an extra `` b `` when he arrived in the UK, I am not sure of the reason at this time. I have some papers somewhere on this point...

The book " Positive Aikido " is available on Amazon or from ` Trafford Publishing`.

Kind regards

Henry

Henry Ellis
http://aikido-controversy.blogspot.com/
Hello Henry,

Thank you for the quick response. Positive Aikido is on order and I hope it will arrive by the end of the year.

K Chiba is the closest I ever got to savouring what the combination of Abbe / Abe / Nakazono was like when you trained in the Hut. Chiba Sensei, hardly an 'aiki-bunny' himself, had very serious respect for these gentlemen. When I came to Japan, Chiba Sensei gave me some advice about training at the Hombu Dojo: as far as possible, I should train with the following Hombu shihans: Yamaguchi, Arikawa, Tada. He never said 'only these', but the fact that he gave me such advice strongly suggested the sentiment.

However, Nicholas Eschenbruch's comment (Post #24) struck a chord:
"... Abe Sensei lived in very sad circumstances towards the end of his life, addiction and poverty were mentioned if I remember correctly. Apparently, he was raised in some sort of war-time interpretation of the samurai spirit that made it very difficult for him to fit in in post-war Japan, according to that conversation."

Having read and reviewed Ellis Amdur's book, Hidden in Plain Sight, I wonder whether one could draw any comparison between Abe Sensei's upbringing and Sokaku Takeda's, but this needs a separate post.

Abe Tadashi was born in 1926. So he was eleven years of age when Japan invaded Manchuria in 1937 and when the Kokutai no Hongi was issued (and compulsorily taught/studied in all Japanese schools) and was fifteen when Pearl Harbour was attacked. So his early education would have taken place in the full flowering of Japan's wartime ultranationalism. He was eighteen in 1944, just the age for manning kamikaze planes.

However, of the shihans I mentioned earlier, Seigo Yamaguchi was born in 1924 and I believe he fought in the Japanese navy, manning submarines. Yamaguchi Sensei underwent the same kind of education and was sent to Burma, as part of a scheme for Japan's war reparations. But I wonder why Abe Sensei went to Europe. According to Stan Pranin, he was invited by Abbe Kenshiro Sensei, but I wonder whether the real reason was that he was a kind of anachronism already: he saw the world in absolutes and had no place in Japan at this time. O Sensei came to terms with Japan's defeat very quietly, training in Iwama over the decade from 1945 to 1955. As did Morihiro Saito.

The reason for these speculations is that I know quite a few Japanese here in Hiroshima, who also found it very, very hard to come to terms with Japan's defeat, especially in the dramatic way that the population of Hiroshima experienced it. I have a Japanese friend and colleague here who was thirteen in 1945. His father was a high-ranking officer on the battleship Yamato, which was built in Kure, a few miles south of Hiroshima, and manned largely by local sailors. The ship was sank on April 7, 1945, and, of course, my friend's father, being an officer, went down with the ship. Not to have done so would have been considered a betrayal of his country. My friend still cannot bring himself to visit the Yamato Museum in Kure.

I mention all this to emnphasize the human aspects of World War II, on both sides. It is a shame that the aikido community in Japan was not able to take better care of Abe Sensei after he returned to Japan.

Best wishes,

Peter G.

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Old 12-11-2010, 10:11 AM   #66
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Re: Tadashi Abe

Hi Peter

I hope you enjoy the book, the next one will be better in hardback.

Yes, the early Chiba Sensei was so similar to training with the old teachers you mention. I think that he is possibly the last of the old school..

However, Nicholas Eschenbruch's comment (Post #24) struck a chord:
"... Abe Sensei lived in very sad circumstances towards the end of his life, addiction and poverty were mentioned if I remember correctly. Apparently, he was raised in some sort of war-time interpretation of the samurai spirit that made it very difficult for him to fit in in post-war Japan, according to that conversation."

Both Kenshiro Abbe ( Abe ) and Tadashi Abe Sensei's ended their lives almost forgotton in difficult financial circumstances..Even now it saddens me to think of these once proud men ending their days in such a way...I do recall Kenshiro Abbe saying that Tadashi Abe had to go back to Japan circa 1967 as there was a problem with someone stealing a lot of money from the family business, Abe Sensei was going to deal with the man concerned, we were all very curious what followed, we never heard anymore.........

I wonder why Abe Sensei went to Europe. According to Stan Pranin, he was invited by Abbe Kenshiro Sensei,

K Abbe Sensei could not have invited T Abe to Europe...It is my understanding that T Abe visited France at the invitation of Mochhizuki Sensei in """""1952 """"" where as Kenshiro Abbe Sensei arrived in the UK in 1955.

The war left its mark on all ages, friend and foe alike..
Life was very hard indeed. I was brought up by a Victorian father who only ever spoke once, all I ever knew and understood was discipline, so the strict regime at the " Hut Dojo " was easier perhaps for me than others.

Regards
Henry

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Old 12-11-2010, 10:31 AM   #67
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Re: Tadashi Abe

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Peter A Goldsbury wrote: View Post
I have a Japanese friend and colleague here who was thirteen in 1945. His father was a high-ranking officer on the battleship Yamato, which was built in Kure, a few miles south of Hiroshima, and manned largely by local sailors. The ship was sank on April 7, 1945, and, of course, my friend's father, being an officer, went down with the ship. Not to have done so would have been considered a betrayal of his country. My friend still cannot bring himself to visit the Yamato Museum in Kure.
I read a very good book about that battleship, by the way, that might interest you:

Requiem for Battleship "Yamato"

It's very intense: they were told it was a one-way mission - only being given enough fuel for the journey to meet the US navy; he talks about running past a gunner during the battle - then on the way back, he'd been vapourised; seeing the captain tied to the wheel; and nearly drowning, and wishing for death, etc.

And the symbolism of 'Yamato' being the poetic name for Japan, and the ship sinking...
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Old 12-11-2010, 05:39 PM   #68
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Re: Tadashi Abe

Hello Graham,

I have the book, and the original Japanese version also. There is also quite an interesting film, of which I think the English title was Yamato. The Japanese is Otoko-tachi no Yamato (The Men of the Yamato). To make it, they built a full-scale replica of the ship at a town called Onomichi, not far from here. There is a museum in Kure, that contains a much smaller model of the ship.

Best wishes,

PAG

Quote:
Graham Jenkins wrote: View Post
I read a very good book about that battleship, by the way, that might interest you:

Requiem for Battleship "Yamato"

It's very intense: they were told it was a one-way mission - only being given enough fuel for the journey to meet the US navy; he talks about running past a gunner during the battle - then on the way back, he'd been vapourised; seeing the captain tied to the wheel; and nearly drowning, and wishing for death, etc.

And the symbolism of 'Yamato' being the poetic name for Japan, and the ship sinking...

P A Goldsbury
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Old 12-11-2010, 05:43 PM   #69
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Re: Tadashi Abe

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Henry Ellis wrote: View Post
Hi Peter

K Abbe Sensei could not have invited T Abe to Europe...It is my understanding that T Abe visited France at the invitation of Mochhizuki Sensei in """""1952 """"" where as Kenshiro Abbe Sensei arrived in the UK in 1955.
Hello Henry,

Yes, you are right. I misread Stan's reference. It was Abbe Kenshiro Sensei who invited Tadashi Abe to the UK, not Europe. My mistake.

PAG

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Old 12-11-2010, 06:06 PM   #70
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Re: Tadashi Abe

Quote:
Peter A Goldsbury wrote: View Post
Hello Henry,

Yes, you are right. I misread Stan's reference. It was Abbe Kenshiro Sensei who invited Tadashi Abe to the UK, not Europe. My mistake.

PAG
Hello Peter

The important point on this valued thread is that we are learning from each other. This subject was an important part of my life, I was so fortunate to meet /study/ train with so many great teachers so early in my life. I was talking with Derek Eastman over a pint on Monday evening how we really had no idea what we were involved in back in the 1950s.

Take care

Henry

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Old 12-12-2010, 03:38 AM   #71
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Re: Tadashi Abe

Just hazarding a guess on the Abe/Abbe thing, but if you show "Abe" to a English speaker with no knowledge of Japanese, they're apt to pronounce it like the English name "Abe", or something similar. But an extra "b" in there, though, and the English speaker is apt to pronounce it much closer to the Japanese pronunciation.

Professor Goldsbury, wouldn't a more accurate translation of Otoko-tachi no Yamato be something like, "Yamato, Ship of Men"?

Josh Reyer

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Th'assay so harde, so sharpe the conquerynge...
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Old 12-12-2010, 04:26 AM   #72
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Re: Tadashi Abe

Quote:
Joshua Reyer wrote: View Post
Professor Goldsbury, wouldn't a more accurate translation of Otoko-tachi no Yamato be something like, "Yamato, Ship of Men"?
Hello Josh,

Yes, indeed. I took the liberty because 'Yamato of Men' sounds much more corny than, e.g., 'ship of fools' of even 'children of men', and it is the otoko-tachi that the film is primarily concerned with. Not that the otoko were fools, of course. They had little choice and were barely otoko. I can imagine Tadashi Abe in the role played by Shido Nakamura.

PAG

Last edited by Peter Goldsbury : 12-12-2010 at 04:29 AM.

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Old 12-12-2010, 04:45 AM   #73
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Re: Tadashi Abe

Just a quick comment on this fascinating thread.

From discussions with various individuals including both Chiba and Yamada Sensei's I always got the impression that both men were troubled in their own way. They were perhaps anachronisms who never fully learnt to deal with the changing world around them.

However, just to add some balance they and others talked about both mens compassion and sincerity a quality shared by both Chiba and Yamada by the way.

yes the training was hard but it built an unbreakable bond between those who followied their path.
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Old 12-12-2010, 11:55 AM   #74
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Re: Tadashi Abe

Two more anecdotes about Tadashi Abe (follow-up from post #53 in this thread). My source is still Georges Rousseau’s “kuden”, during, before and after training in our dojo. (BTW: I apparently got the dates and places right, in my previous post)

(6) Suwari-waza Shomen-uchi Ikkyo
The first year or so, Abe didn’t teach anything else but Suwari-waza Shomen-uchi Ikkyo. Pierre Chassang used to say: “We used to think that aikido WAS Suwari-waza Shomen-uchi Ikkyo”.

(7) Tadashi Abe addressing the Aikikai establishment at the first IAF congress in Tokyo (1976)
At some point during the congress Abe took the floor, unannounced and without asking for permission. He started some kind of sermon, in Japanese with his own French translation (isn’t that remarkable?), singling out a number of the Japanese big shots:
• “You! Why doshu? Before waka-sensei.”
• “Saito. Pupil of Tadashi Abe.”
• “Tamura, good little boy”.
• “Yamada, dirty little boy. Pissed on my pants” [As pointed out above, Yamada was related to Abe, and known to Abe since Yamada was a baby]
• etc.
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Old 12-22-2010, 02:38 AM   #75
jamie yugawa
 
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Re: Tadashi Abe

Was Abe Sensei still training in the 70's and 80's?
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